GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Letters/My View

October 18, 2012

Letter: Join the vote to right campaign finance laws

To the Editor:

The Gloucester City Council, in its last meeting, voted unanimously for a resolution petitioning the Congress of the United States to pass a constitutional amendment restoring “the First Amendment and fair elections to the people.”

In July, our State Legislature, with only one dissenting vote and joining seven other states, passed a similar bipartisan resolution.

The Supreme Court has always recognized that money in politics can be corrupting or have “the appearance of corruption.” They have, therefore, held that contributions directly to a political candidate can be limited, but in their Citizens United decision, all restraints were lifted on supposedly uncoordinated campaigns.

Hundreds of millions of dollars are now being poured into superPACs and hidden as “dark money” in 501c4 corporations by wealthy individuals, corporations, unions and other special interests.

In November the citizens of Gloucester, Rockport and Essex, will have an opportunity to vote on this issue, as will one third of the people across the state.

I urge you to vote “yes” on Gloucester Ballot Question 5 and help begin a grassroots campaign to restore the First Amendment and fair elections to “we the people.”

NOEL MANN

Dorset Drive, Gloucester

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